nvdaily.com link to home page

Traffic | Weather | Mobile Edition
      Archives | Subscribe | Special Sections

Local News arrow Ryan Cornell arrow Winchester

| 0

Black Friday calmer than usual in area

A sign drawn by shopkeeper Amy Helmick sits in front of the Old Town General Store on the Loudoun Street Mall in Winchester on Friday. Plaid Friday promotes shopping at local, independent business rather than big box stores. Ryan Cornell/Daily (Buy photo)

By Ryan Cornell

WINCHESTER -- As the annual post-turkey buying binge began hours earlier this year, shoppers and merchants are noticing a calmer, less-frenzied Black Friday.

At the Apple Blossom Mall, Larry Nelson, area director of mall marketing, said it was an "event-free evening" without any security issues.

The doors of the Winchester mall opened at 8 p.m. Thursday, compared to the midnight after Thanksgiving last year and 5 a.m. Friday two years ago.

"We had lines at all three of the mall entrances an hour before the mall opened," Nelson said. "It seems like no matter when we open, it's a frantic rush to get in."

Stores might have been packed with deal-seeking night owls at first, but Nelson said the mall emptied at about 2:30 a.m. until a second wave of shoppers flooded in at about 10 a.m. Noting that the deals at the mall are the same in the morning as the evening before, he advised future Black Friday shoppers to come in the dead of night.

Sgt. Justin Meredith with the Winchester Police Department said he didn't start his shift until about 6:30 a.m. Friday, but hasn't heard about any incidents typically associated with the spending holiday.

"Usually if it's something major, they pass it on, but they didn't," he said.

He said the shopping rush has resulted in two traffic accidents, including one leaving the mall at about 11:30 a.m. Friday.

"It's been a pretty decent Black Friday," he said. "This time seems relatively quiet compared to years past."

A number of shoppers were skipping the lines and "doorbuster" sales and checking off their Christmas lists in Downtown Winchester. Most of the merchants in Old Town were celebrating their own version of the holiday called Plaid Friday, which encourages people to shop at local, independently owned businesses.

Karen Arbore, who traveled from New York to spend the Thanksgiving weekend with her family, said they started shopping at about 11 a.m.

"We were at the stores last night and we actually wanted to boycott them, but we decided to take a shot and there were a lot of people there," she said. "We were amazed so we thought there might be other people out there in this area today, being that they might have all gone to the major stores last night. But there's not as many as I thought."

Her brother-in-law, David Lipton, visiting from southern California, said he was surprised by how empty the Loudoun Street Mall seemed.

"It's very calm," he said. "I don't know if it's the weather or what."

Lipton, a first-time Black Friday shopper, said he had made a stop at Incredible Flying Objects to buy some gifts. It was also his first time on the walking mall, which "absolutely awed" him.

"They're looking for the bargain basement instead of the quality relics and fine craftsmanship," he said about shoppers packing national retailers. "I see this street from front to back and it's all craftsmanship."

Incredible Flying Objects, which was the source of many purple shopping bags seen on Friday, offered free hot chocolate and donuts and a 10-percent discount on everything in the store from 6 to 10 a.m. Owner Drew Van Laeken said they didn't start to get busy until about 9 a.m.

"I guess people don't get up really early to come down here," he said. "They probably go to the big box stores really early and come down here and have lunch.

"So we're noticing during the say that it's been wonderful," he said. "Lots and lots of people coming down."

Two other customers at the store, John and Susan Hines, said they liked how peaceful it was.

"I'm not into Black Friday," Susan Hines said. "This is better because it's open and it's not crowded."

Her husband agreed.

"It's so much more relaxing," John Hines said. "You can just take your time."

The Thanksgiving weekend continues with Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.

Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rcornell@nvdaily.com

Keep up to date on local news

Sign up here to receive Northern Virginia Daily news delivered to your email box each morning and when breaking news occurs.


Comments that are posted represent the opinion of the commenter and not the Northern Virginia Daily/nvdaily.com. View our comments/submisssions policy. Report abuse by clicking the X next to the comment.

Local News Sections

Affordable Care Act Agency on Aging Agriculture Alex Bridges Apple Blossom Festival Aviation Basye Berryville Boyce Breaking News Business Charities Civil War Clarification Clarke County Colleges Corrections Courthouse Notes: Permits, Transactions Courts & Legal News Crime & Public Safety Economy and Jobs Edinburg Education Edward N. Bell Election 2012 Election 2013 Entertainment Environment Fairs & Festivals Fire & Rescue Fishers Hill Fort Valley Frederick County Front Royal George Washington National Forest Guest Column Hard Times Health History Holidays Homes In The Spotlight Jeff Nations Joe Beck Josette Keelor Kim Walter Ledger Livestock Local Markets Maurertown Media Middletown Military & Veterans Moms Mount Jackson New Market Page County Pets & Animals Politics Progress 2013 Quicksburg Religion Rockingham County RSW Jail Ryan Cornell School News Shenandoah County Shenandoah Farms Volunteer Fire Department Star Tannery State Stephens City Steven A. Boyce Strasburg Toms Brook Traffic & Transportation Utilities Valley 911 Warren County Weather West Virginia Winchester Woodstock Year in Review

News | Sports | Business | Lifestyle | Obituaries | Opinion | Multimedia| Entertainment | Classifieds
Contact Us | NIE | Place a Classified | Privacy Policy | Comments/Submissions Policy | Subscribe

Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily | nvdaily.com | 152 N. Holliday St., Strasburg, Va. 22657 | (800) 296-5137

2013 Virginia Press Association Sweepstakes Winner
The Best Small Daily Newspaper in Virginia!

nvdaily.com | seeshenandoah.com